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Pederson: Sam Bradford's 'best days are ahead of him'


Sam Bradford played his best football down the stretch last season.

After Philadelphia's Week 8 bye, the quarterback completed 68.2 percent of his passes, earned 279.9 yards per game with a 10-to-4 TD-to-INT ratio and a 97.0 passer rating.


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New Eagles coach Doug Pederson made it clear the team believes Bradford will build on his 2015 performance.

"His best days are ahead of him," Pederson said this week, via "What he did toward the end of the season last year, building on that. He mentioned continuity -- he knows the team, he knows the players. It might be a little different set of plays that we're installing, but he knows the guys. That right there leads me to believe that we can have success."

The Eagles have put a lot of stock in how Bradford finished the season, eschewing his overall productivity. For the season, Bradford ranked 27th in TD-INT ratio (19-14), 26th in passer rating (86.4) and 25th in yards per attempt (7.0).

The 28-year-old signal caller has been even worse over the totality of his career. Of the 20 quarterbacks to have started at least 60 games since he entered the NFL in 2010, Bradford ranks last in wins (25), yards per attempt (6.5), touchdowns (78) and passer rating (81).

None of those stats has deterred the Eagles from placing their faith in Bradford for 2016. Pederson added that the quarterback will have more control at the line of scrimmage this season than he had under previous coach Chip Kelly.

"That's a big weapon in today's football, because defenses are so complex nowadays," Pederson said of a quarterback having command at the line. "Not so much audibles and checks, but just subtle things that can really make a big difference in the course of a football game. He's accustomed to that, he's been used to that. He's an extremely sharp guy, intelligent guy. Offensively, we'll benefit from having his mind."

The Eagles boast a strong roster. Upgrades to the offensive line will be necessary, but a lot of Philadelphia success in Pederson's first season will come down to how Bradford performs. The Eagles are betting he plays big.


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